The next European Union Framework Programme for Research and Innovation (FP9) is currently being developed and negotiated. The successor to Horizon 2020 is expected to launch on 1 January 2021 and to cover the period 2021-2027.
Ecsite has just released a position paper that states that FP9 should recognize science engagement as an integral part of the Research and innovation system by actively involve citizens in the science and innovation process. This, the paper argues, is the role of professional science mediators working in science engagement organisations such as science museums/centres.
It is essential to advocate for science engagement in FP9 and a collective effort is needed. As you may remember, the "Science for and with society" strand of the current Horizon 2020 programme was not present in initial plans: it is only thanks to the rallying of Members of the European Parliament during the programme's negotiation phase that this crucial strand for our field was added resulting in more visibility for science engagement and funding for collaborative projects many of our organisations have been involved in.
What we are asking from FP9
European “Youth and Science and Technology” has to become a European flagship
A science and society programme is required with a separate strand of funding that includes a focus on combating fake news
Science engagement must be recognised as an integral part of the research and innovation system
Innovation in science engagement approaches is needed to tackle new societal challenges
Funding for engaging citizens with the process and outcomes of science and innovation needs a significant increase
Read the whole position paper and its five chapters (scientific careers, trust between Research and Society, innovation, democratic Europe, future and emerging technologies) here.
What you can do
We urge all science engagement organisations and professionals to join this advocacy campaign.
Download the Position Paper and get on board: share the digital version with stakeholders who could support our position, invite them to take part in your organisation’s public activities to witness the power of science engagement in reinforcing links between science and society.
Let's coordinate our efforts: get in touch with Marie Couëdic at the Ecsite office to see how you can best contribute and get your advocacy kit.
Ecsite is dedicating strategic advocacy resources to make the voice of science engagement heard in this process, an effort the Ecsite Board and members are personally committing time and energy to. We are targeting several groups of stakeholders at the European and national levels in the framework development process: the European Commission of course, but also Members of European Parliament (MEPs) who will be amending the text. In addition, advocacy at national level in all EU member states will also be crucial to advance our ideas. We will be publishing regular updates about the process.
Read Ecsite President Herbert Münder's column in Spokes (April 2018 issue)
Understand the background: read our summary of the legislative and negotiation process around FP9